This represents the view looking westwards across Mount's Bay at sunset. The general lightness of resulted from Turner having initially drawn the scene fairly boldly in watercolour, and then having submerged the entire sheet in water, probably in a bucket. The submersion removed some colours, diffused others and generally lightened the tones, thus creating outstanding subtelties of colour and tone. The areas of intense blue in the clouds, and of crimson and yellow around the sun, were added subsequently.
Gallery label, August 2004